Full fire-protection readiness before the latest SOLAS regulations come into force

The new SOLAS regulations related to fire protection will come into force soon. From 1 July 2018, each ship will be required to have appropriate radio equipment on board. Units that won’t meet the requirements may be ordered with fines and even suspended in operation.

On the 1 July 2018, the latest provisions of Chapter II-2 of the SOLAS Convention will come into force. It is a cut-off date after which ship-owners of vessels built before 1st of July 2014 must equip each fire-fighting team operating on the ship with appropriate radio equipment to ensure radio communication during the fire action.

Each radio set used by the fire team should meet the specific technical requirements and standards set by the Convention. The device, which fits perfectly into the SOLAS standards, is the SAILOR 3965 UHF radio, which was designed and introduced to the market by Cobham – well-known manufacturer of maritime radiocommunication solutions – and distributed by Enamor.

The set has features that allow for secure radio communication in difficult conditions of fire action on the ship. These include “intrinsically safe” according to ATEX standards, UHF work band ensuring better ranges in the steel structure of the vessel, cooperation with audio accessories allowing hands-free conversation and oxygen masks, large function keys that facilitate changing settings even in protective gloves, durable battery, CTCSS option and built-in voice feedback option while selecting communication channel as well as red case – that suggest using during fire actions.

Not complying with SOLAS regulations may result in high fines. Penalties can exceed even $20 000-$30 000 on a daily basis, as well as losses related to suspension in action and delays – $100 000. Appropriate equipment will allow not only to adequately protect the unit against failures and fires, but also to avoid mentioned penalties.

Choosing a right radio set may result in exposure to the crew, fleet and business. The purchase of the right equipment is therefore crucial and should not be postponed.